Posted by Ada Coddington for R3publicans
Many Western countries began immigration policies without feeling any need to monitor the long-term results. Indeed, many considered that immigration was an expedient response to labour shortages, and that the labourers, such as Turkish guest-workers in Germany, would probably eventually want to return home with their earnings at retirement. The United Kingdom seems to have begun its largest and most transformative policy in a typical fit of absent-mindedness. Workers were needed by London Underground, and that influx from the Caribbean began a de facto immigration policy, to which permissive legislation was added later, giving rights to all Commonwealth countries. In some sense it seemed a temporary expedient, and nothing more. Travel was by steamer, things happened slowly, and immigration proceeded steadily.